All Humans Are Welcome Here!

Category : Hayduke

I hiked the Hayduke Trail solo eastbound in Spring 2016 and solo’ed it again westbound in Fall 2017. Then I designed a similar route and hiked that solo in 2019. I had fun. If I make it look easy, just keep in mind I’m tough as nails.

From the back cover of the book that started it all:

Traversing six national parks (Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce, Grand Canyon, Zion), a national recreation area, a national monument, and various wilderness, primitive, and wilderness study areas, the Hayduke Trail is a challenging, 800-mile backcountry route on the Colorado Plateau. Whimsically named for a character in Edward Abbey’s The Monkey Wrench Gang, the trail begins in Arches National Park and ends in Zion National Park, stays entirely on public land, and traverses the complete variety of terrain available to hikers on the Plateau short of technical climbing.

Joe Mitchell and Mike Coronella pioneered Hayduke after concluding that a long trail—such as the Appalachian or Pacific Crest— was possible on the Plateau, thus introducing more people to these unique and threatened public lands. The Hayduke Trail includes detailed maps of the entire route, suggested cache points, and a wealth of description and tips for tackling this intense undertaking.


I hustled off the mountain (South Mt Ellen Summit, 11,400ft) because I saw this coming. When it hit it was drizzly at first, and I kept moving away from its dark core the best I could. But then suddenly another darker cloud came from the opposite direction and slammed hard with hail and flooding. When it hit I was in a perfect slickrock high spot with good drainage. So I called myself lucky, even though I got soaked. The next morning Mt Ellen was dappled with snow again. El Niño is busy in South Utah, too!


Thanks mom and little sister for getting me these shoes for Christmas – they’re taking me such cool places!! And if you’re wondering wtf is going on with my gaiters, here’s your answer: I was post holing up to my HIPS. Funny story about that. So I’m postholing, and sometimes trying my luck at crawling over the snow without sinking, so obviously there’s some grunting and deep breathing going on. It’s hard work. I’m going along like this then suddenly, somehow, I hear the voice of my mother, calling my name. “Caroline? Caroline, are you OKAY?” What? How? Apparently I had pocked-dialed my mother while postholing in the woods in the Henry Mountains. So I picked up the phone and… continue reading

loop panorama 1 of 3

Sunset Loop Pano 1

Sunset on the Colorado River near Moab, Utah. It is here that the river loops into a perfect near figure 8 shape, separated by tall slivers of rock wall. It looks great on the map, too. I’d seen the Loop in books and calendars; it was something else to climb up there in person. Wowy.


There’s LTE in the middle of nowhere and we got tons of rain and snow last night in Canyonlands so you get an update. None of that snow was there yesterday.

Little Package